Starks Counterculture Essay

Submitted By firefox51093
Words: 1974
Pages: 8

Starks Counterculture Margret Meade once said “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed individuals can change the world, indeed it's the only thing that ever has” (Hippie Quotes). During the decade of the 1960’s four band members were these committed individuals that made a counterculture movement. Many ponder on the fact of how does someone make a movement on the entire world, although it was primarily the United States and England. The solution is simple; the right people making a movement during the right time will change culture. During the 1960’s people would become addicted to drugs. An epidemic that there is no tolerance in America for now was not that big of a deal back in the 1960’s and transformed the way people thought. Many adults and mature people saw the Beatles as immature and fools, but they were just simply having fun. Something as simple as having fun was a part of the counterculture. The ambition for money either increased or decreased depending on where you lived. America believed in antimaterialism, while London had a strong connection with money. In the book Meet the Beatles A Cultural History of the band that Shook Youth, Gender, and Culture Steven Starks major contribution is how the Beatles revolutionized the culture. Starks book clearly shows how Paul, John, Ringo, and George revolutionized the world simply by doing what they love and spreading it at the same time. Alcohol has been around since before the times of Christ by the Egyptians. People consume alcohol because it plays an important role in enhancing the enjoyment and quality of life (Hanson). The Beatles abused alcohol for this exact reason. This delicacy of a drink has roots in their childhood hometown of Liverpool, London. Liverpool was a seaport that had many sailors, and where there are sailors there is alcohol. The city had a very low reputation of being drunks. The first reference of alcohol Stark makes is about John Lennon “in the fall of 1958, in the aftermath of his mother’s death, John’s attitude and behavior worsened dramatically and he began drinking heavily”(Stark 71-72). The year 1960 was when the band truly showed their alcoholism in Hamburg, Germany where “their diet was cornflakes and alcohol” (Stark 83). In Liverpool and Hamburg the Beatles “were always drinking, remembered photographer Harry Benson” (Stark 171). The drugs mixed with alcohol would speed up time. George remembered a time when on a plane “the Preludins and alcohol made a long trip seem like it had taken 10 minutes” (Stark 171). When talking about a counter culture everything builds off of something. It is quite evident that without the Beatles the counterculture would have never existed. An attribute that helped define the youth culture was “the use of drugs which the Beatles wouldn’t have happened without” (Stark 170). Alcohol was the gateway to them getting into further drugs which open their eyes and the youth culture to a new world. One of the Beatles favorite mixtures was alcohol with Purple Hearts. Purple Hearts otherwise known as amphetamines which are stimulants for people with narcolepsy too keep them awake (Amphetamines). Many people illegally take these during clubbing because they “make you more promiscuous, more creative, and more excited (Stark 171-172). This helped the Beatles on stage because they were wild, “they made a lot of noise and passed on drug created excitement to the audience” (Stark 85). With these four “outlaws” (Stark 85) being the center of attention it allowed them to get full attention of their audience so they fans could get the message of their songs. A drug that had one of the largest impacts on America and the Beatles as a whole was given to by these four in the summer of 1964 by Bob Dylan (Stark 172). Marijuana was a plant that “gave musicians that sense of heightened awareness and produced classical hits” (Stark 173). During the 1960’s the fans that went to these concerts were just as high as